Engage Your Best Residents, They Already Love You

Author: Alecia Pirulis  

Happy Day After Thanksgiving, better known as Black Friday. I am not much of a shopper, but it is pretty interesting observing the various retail marketing shenanigans as everyone vies for shoppers, but is anyone paying any attention, other than by price, which is the shortest route to solidifying commodity, a lower price. We now live and work in an Opt In Society and folks aren’t paying any attention to your silly marketing.

Many apartment management companies also follow the lower price, or said another way “Free Rent” path to no where, which is just another way of saying “We are a Commodity” and “Nothing sets us apart”.

Break From the Path of Apartment Commodity

Do something different for goodness sakes and stop the insanity of Free Rent. It is easy, but has little to no net gain. Perhaps the time has come for you and your apartment management company to enter the world of Social Media Marketing. Engage Your Best Residents, They Already Love You

Social media marketing is a term that describes the act of using social networks, online communities, blogs, wikis or any other collaborative Internet form of media for marketing, sales, public relations and customer service. Common social media marketing tools include Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, Facebook, Flickr and YouTube.

In the context of Internet marketing, social media refers to a collective group of web properties whose content is primarily published by users, not direct employees of the property (e.g. the vast majority of video on YouTube is published by non-YouTube employees).

Ford Finds Social Media Success with a Thirty Year Old Product

We are pretty impressed with what our own Detroit local @ScottMonty, Ford Motor Company Social Media Guru has pulled off with the Fiesta Movement. Scott reports on the progress over on his blog The Social Media Marketing Blog:

This IS Customer Engagement

In late 2008, Ford re-launched the Fiesta as an all-new vehicle in Europe. The name had been around for some 30 years, but the new Fiesta was to be something special indeed. This would Ford’s first truly global platform car, which means that it will be nearly identical in any country you find it. Since the car was already available in Europe and would not launch in the U.S. until the spring of 2010, there was a unique opportunity at hand.
So, earlier this year, Ford announced that we would be making 100 Euro-spec Fiestas available to individuals or teams who proved they were socially vibrant and could take part in a 6-month long experiment, during which we would loan them a vehicle. The only requirement was that they would have to produce one video a month based on a theme (Travel, Technology, Style/Design, Social Activism, Adventure, Entertainment). Other than that, the Fiesta Agents (they received assignments, or “missions,” from Mission Control) could say whatever they wanted about the vehicle. And we aggregated all of their content on fiestamovement.com – unedited, uncensored, in real time.
In addition to building buzz, we solicited feedback from the agents as to what they liked and didn’t like about the vehicle. We shared that input directly with our engineering team and they were able to make a few tweaks to the North American version of the Fiesta before production was locked down.
Results
The program is just winding to a close, but the output has been impressive.
  • Of the 700 or so videos that the agents have produced, we’ve seen 4.8 million views on YouTube.
  • Their Flickr photos have been viewed more than 670,000 times
  • There have been over 3.4 million impressions of Fiesta Movement on Twitter.
  • Over 50,000 hand-raisers have indicated that they want more information about the vehicle as it goes on sale
  • 97% of those 50,000 do not own Ford vehicles.
  • There is a 40+% level of awareness of the Fiesta – for a vehicle that’s not even available in this country yet, which is the equivalent of the awareness of some of our vehicles that have been in market for 2-3 years.
  • All with $0 in traditional advertising.